When Marie’s children were born, she had them vaccinated in
accordance with state laws and she turned over the mandated
documentation to the local schools in Ohio. Little did she foresee that
school officials would threaten her with education neglect several years
later because her daughter’s records could not be found.
Earlier this fall, Marie was informed that until she produced new
copies of the vaccination record or had her daughter re-vaccinated, the
girl could not begin junior high school — a consequence that ultimately
could have resulted in neglect charges against Marie.
Refusing to have her adolescent daughter re-vaccinated, Marie
questioned the school board on the accuracy of record keeping in the
district and was eventually heard. Her case is now settled, but other
parents who question not only accuracy of record keeping but also the
merits of mandated vaccinations are facing intimidation, she said.
“The mandated vaccinations must have adequate record keeping or else
children will end up being re-immunized unnecessarily with unproven and
unknown, potentially damaging side effects,” said Marie, who wishes to
Schools are cracking down on mandated vaccinations in other states as
well, including New York — the new home state of Senator-elect Hillary
Clinton, who authored a notorious universal health-care proposal during
her husband’s first term as president.
In New York, as in Ohio, children are required by law to be
vaccinated for hepatitis B — primarily an adult disease usually spread
by multiple sex partners, drug abuse or an occupation with exposure to
blood. Children are at a very low risk of exposure, unless the pregnant
mother is infected, according to the
American Association of
Physicians and Surgeons, a non-partisan professional association
The families of 77 middle-school students in Utica, N.Y., were told to have their children vaccinated last month for hepatitis B, under threat of losing custody. Government studies, however, say that particular vaccination can be deadly to children.
On Oct. 10, the students were sent home for failing to get hepatitis B vaccines by the state deadline. Parents were warned the children would be turned over to Child Protective Services for neglect if they were still without a vaccination in two weeks.
“This is Hillary-care coming home to roost in New York,” said Jane M. Orient, M.D., executive director of the AAPS. The Clintons pledged during the 1992 presidential campaign to create the Vaccines For Children program, which was to become the first domestic policy initiative of the administration. It was designed as their first shot to pass the Health Security Act.
“Their campaign to pass VFC was based on creating a false crisis by claiming that millions of children would be exposed to risk of disease without a government program,” said Orient.
“This (hepatitis B) vaccine is a potential death sentence for some children,” Orient continued. “Government studies show that children under the age of 14 are three times more likely to die or suffer adverse reactions after receiving hepatitis B vaccines than to catch the disease itself.”
Nevertheless, states are demanding that parents have their children vaccinated for the disease.
American Academy of Pediatrics admits, “In the U.S., most persons infected with hepatitis B virus (HBV) acquired their infection as young adults or adolescents. HBV is transmitted primarily through sexual contact, injecting-drug use, regular household contact with a chronically infected person, or occupational exposure. However, the source of infection is unknown for approximately one third of persons who have acute hepatitis B.”
According to its own statement, “The AAP recommends that providers administer hepatitis B vaccine to all adolescents for whom they provide services.”
Claire Pospisil, spokeswoman for the
New York State Department of
Health, said, “This is the first year we’re requiring schools to immunize seventh-graders.” Ideally, she continued, students are given the vaccine at the beginning of the school year. However, the state did have some “problems” with compliance in certain areas of the state.
Many parents do not want their children immunized for certain diseases, including hepatitis B and polio, because of the risk factors involved. However, Pospisil believes “parents may not be used to immunizing their kids in the seventh grade [compared to] when they first start school.”
The spokeswoman noted parents may apply for an exemption, “but it’s fairly narrow.” Parents must obtain certification from a New York physician that a vaccine may be detrimental to a child’s health, or parents can submit a written and signed statement to the child’s school principal indicating the family has “sincere and genuine religious beliefs” against receiving the vaccination.
Pospisil said principals may ask for more information than just the signed letter and that requests for exemption are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
At least one group advocates the elimination of mandated vaccines altogether. AAPS recently adopted a resolution calling for an end to mandatory childhood vaccines. The resolution passed without a single “no” vote at the group’s annual meeting this month.
“This is not a vote against vaccines,” said Orient. “This resolution only attempts to halt blanket vaccine mandates by government agencies and school districts that give no consideration for the rights of the parents or the individual medical condition of the child.”
According to Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, 42 states have mandatory vaccine policies, and many children are required to have 22 shots before first grade.
“It’s obscene to threaten to seize a child just because his parents refuse medical treatment that is obviously unnecessary and perhaps even dangerous,” Orient added. “AAPS believes that parents, with the advice of their doctors, should make decisions about their children’s medical care — not government bureaucrats. This resolution affirms that position.”
In the meantime, parents like Marie continue to battle with school districts over controversial vaccines and immunizations. To those parents, Marie gives some advice: “Above all, educate yourself. The schools will not trouble themselves to educate parents,” she said. “An educated parent is the sole defense of a child that is to be instructed in a schooling environment. Always, always appeal to lawmakers, school administrators and anyone who will listen to address with good medical sense the necessity of mandated vaccination.”
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